Nestled in the boglands of Ballintleave, the Kerry Bog Village Museum is a quaint, charming museum that provides a glimpse into Ireland of the 19th century.
Located at the foot of Ireland’s highest mountain range, the McGillicuddy Reeks, the Kerry Bog Village Museum is one of the many gems on the Ring of Kerry (see my photos here), a picturesque 111-mile drive around the Iveragh Peninsula that remains popular among foreigners and locals alike.
Kerry Bog Village Museum: What to Expect
Located on the N70 between Killorglin and Glenbeigh in Kerry, the Kerry Bog Village is a must-see if you’re in the vicinity and Irish rural history and culture excite you; most people find it well worth a visit.
Especially considering the entry is only a max of €6.50 per person (Special discounted rates are available for Kids, Students, and OAP’s). They’ve got some great installations that make the visit interesting.
Visitors get a comprehensive booklet at the entrance (available in many languages), which elaborates on the main attractions with fun and educational facts. Look at their fabulous array of authentic antiques that were used during this time period.
While many of the displays are self-explanatory, information points are plenty all over the property if you need help. Their knowledgeable and extremely helpful staff also deserve a special mention; they go out of their way to help you with, well, anything and everything.
Adorable Irish Wolfhounds & Kerry Bog Ponies
The Irish wolfhounds are definitely the museum’s showstoppers for children. In case you’re unfamiliar, Irish wolfhounds are a sight-hound dog breed famous for their size, so much so that they feature in quite a bit of literature.
While historically, they were famed as war and guard dogs, these gentle giants are adorable, to say the least. The dogs are well cared for, friendly, and playful.
The museum is also home to Kerry Bog Ponies, a breed characterized by a low weight-to-height ratio and an unusual gait. They’re believed to have originated in Southwestern Ireland’s Kerry, where they were used to transport peat and kelp.
The ponies at the museum are a hit among visitors. One of the main things to keep in mind when visiting is that the wolfhounds and ponies are animals after all; they may tire of all the attention at times.
Once you’re done touring the museum, don’t forget to stop by the gift shop – it’s small, cute with lots to offer at very reasonable prices, and let’s be honest, there are always people back home waiting for souvenirs. There’s also another gift shop in the Red Fox Inn if you’re interested.
Grab a Bite, a Beer, or the Most Amazing Irish Coffee Ever (At Least I Think So)
The Red Fox Inn is a local pub well-loved for many things – one is its old-time decor and atmosphere and the other is its unbelievably good Irish coffee. Almost every visitor to the museum goes for a cuppa here, and for a good reason.
The coffee is a tad expensive at about €6.50 (€6.00 with a museum ticket) but almost everyone finds it well worth the money. Even if you don’t have time to visit the museum, we definitely recommend the Irish coffee at The Red Fox; it really is something else.
The inn also offers snacks and more substantial meals if you’re hungry and wish to grab a bite before the next leg of your trip.
It is well worth the trip to the Kerry Bog Village Museum.
The Kerry Bog Village, with its thatched cottages, is a one of its kind museum in Europe, and we most definitely recommend it for families and anyone who’s on the Ring of Kerry with half an hour to spare.
Even if this is not something that excites you a lot, it’s still a good halt to stretch your legs, use clean restrooms (wheelchair accessible), and grab a sandwich or lunch with a chilled Guinness (or a coffee). The museum has one big car park, which definitely adds to its convenience.